Florida prosecutor: Runcie lied about contacting witnesses in case of former Broward Schools employee

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - New details have surfaced in the arrest of Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie.

According to the Attorney General’s Office of Statewide Prosecution, the case against Runcie appears to hinge on questions surrounding another case, that of former Broward Schools Technology Chief Anthony Hunter.

Officials said Hunter was accused of steering equipment contracts toward an acquaintance.

Prosecutors on Monday said Runcie was questioned on April 1 in a grand jury probe into school safety funds and management in several counties.

In a court filing, prosecutors said, referring to Runcie, “Defendant was asked, ‘Did you talk to anybody who would have information about the Hunter situation to prepare for any questions about that, given it’s a felony indictment?'”

The filing goes on to state Runcie was asked, “‘[Any] communications related to any of the issues that are part of the Hunter indictment?’ His answer was, ‘No, no that, not that I’m aware of.'”

The filing further states Runcie was also asked, “‘Phone calls? Emails? Text messages? Smoke signals?'”

According to the indictment, Runcie answered, “‘No, no that. I am trying – no. no, haven’t talked to anyone specifically about that.'”

When asked how he prepared, investigators said, Runcie replied that he relied on his memory from a past workshop.

But prosecutors said those statements were false.

Their filing states, “Not only did defendant personally contact one or more of the listed witnesses in the Hunter case, he did so on the evening of March 29, 2021.”

Prosecutors said those statements landed Runcie behind bars on a perjury charge. He was taken into custody on Wednesday.

The filing states Runcie also spoke to Broward Schools General Counsel Barbara Myrick, who, prosecutors said, also spoke to witnesses.

Prosecutors said they have phone records to back it up.

Myrick was also arrested.

Runcie’s lawyers had demanded details on the perjury charge against him. Last week, days before this new information was revealed, his supporters argued for due process.

“Bob Runcie has put his head down and worked hard for 10 years,” said City Furniture CEO Keith Koenig. “I happen to know him, and I’ve seen the progress that he’s made, and let the whole process play out.”

“We want to make sure that the School Board understands, and that this community understands, that an indictment does not mean a person is guilty of any crime,” said Bishop C.E. Glover with Mount Bethel Ministries.

An attorney for Runcie said the charges were political, and they intend to enter a plea of not guilty.

Monday night, 7News reached out to Runcie’s attorneys. They said they would not be able to comment at this time.

Dr. Rosalind Osgood, a member of the Broward County School Board, said she does not have enough information to make a comment.

Runcie is next expected to appear in court sometime in May.

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